USDA investments in specialty crops and food security to bring millions to California

The USDA has announced the availability of more than $330 million to help agricultural producers and organizations in the food supply chain recover from the financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The funding is part of USDA’s Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative launched in March, and it includes $169.9 million for the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program and the availability of $75 million for Gus Schumacher Nutrition Incentive Program (GusNIP). This funding will aid in developing new markets for U.S. agricultural products, expand the specialty crop food sector, and promote the purchase of fruits and vegetables by lower-income consumers.

California has been allocated a combined $55.3 million in Farm Bill and COVID-19 relief money. CDFA will continue with its regular process for the 2021 Specialty Crop Block Grant Program . Once a plan has been fully developed to select projects for COVID-19 relief grant funding, that information will be shared.

CDFA’s Office of Farm to Fork is a current GusNIP recipient and will be eligible for additional funding under that program.